As a parent you question many things right from the beginning of your pregnancy through birth to raising them right! I don’t think there is an age where this ever stops being the case. B has recently received his placement at his first official school. After telling him that he was going to go to big kid school come this September, he has been ecstatic. Nothing to do with finding out his school shirts are blue, his favorite color, I promise you.
Now that he is going to big kid school, we have been preparing things for him for his new big kid adventures. Soon he will have a big kid bedroom and a learning space to do his homework and it got me thinking how much is going to change over the next few months not just for him but for us too.
Kids really do grow up way too fast and when my momma said enjoy my childhood while it last I wish I would have listened to her. She was so right. Now I am trying to prepare my son to do the same. It’s a fine line between making them grow up too quick with too many responsibilities and pressures and not enough. I am sure I am not the only parent who thinks and feels this way too. Yes, I want my baby to enjoy being innocent but I also want to prepare him for the future as best I can, that’s my job isn’t it?
No, I don’t think having a big kid bedroom or a learning space will do just that. I am talking more in terms of teaching them things far beyond wiping their bottoms, holding a pencil, and having manners. Mr P runs his own financial business and is very numbers orientated. He is smart with his money, saves, donates and also lives life to it’s fullest. It got me thinking when do you start teaching your child about money?
So I thought about it and came up with a few logical tips as maybe you too are thinking the same. There are a million different ways to teach your child about money and many opinions on when to start them. These are just my own opinions but always love to hear what you think in the comments below.
5 Tips to Teaching Your Child About Money
1. Start when they learn to count.
Obviously tailor your games and teaching methods to their age but as soon as they can count they can start grasping what is more, what is less and what money is used for. It’s never too early to start teaching a basic foundation to money. They can understand a lot more than we give them credit for.
2. Talk about money and lead by example.
Talk about money at the dinner table, while you are shopping or picking up groceries. Our children learn from what we do, day in and day out. Lead by example, too. Tell them how much Mommy saved this month or how it’s good to donate to others in need. The more normal it is to talk about the various aspects of money the more they will understand it and ask questions. Kids love asking questions, it’s how they learn.
3. Divide their allowance up.
Have them decorate three jars; one for saving, one for spending, and one for donations. They will love the project and decorating the jars as you explain the importance of each one and why you are making three. Then each week / month when they get their allowance have them divide some into savings, spending and donations. This will teach them not to splurge and the importance of holding back money for the future. It will also teach them to think of others and give back, every little helps those less fortunate.
4. Let them learn from their mistakes.
Parents may have the overall say on what they use the spending jar money on but let them make rash decisions and learn from their mistake of what is worth it and not worth it. Life isn’t all cushions and fairytales they need to know what losing money, and wasting money is all about.
5. Set up a bank account.
Every quarter have them take their savings jar into a bank and deposit their savings into their very own account. They will feel grown up and love the adventure. I loved having my own bank account when I turned 12 years old and I still remember the day my Momma took me to open it. Not only did she teach me about money and savings but it’s a great memory I will cherish forever. It made me feel like she trusted me and felt I was independent enough to handle it and what child doesn’t love that? Banks such as TSB do under 19s accounts for ages 11-18 to give your child the best benefits to their savings. For younger children, you can open a savings account for them too.
In a generation of credit lovers, I think its is important to teach your child about money as early as possible. Both the good and bad that can come of money which includes debt. Obviously, I am not recommending you sit down with your 4 year old because she/he can count and talk about ISA and credit card debt but up until they are 18 they are our responsibility and no parent wants to NOT prepare them for the challenges of the financial world they may have ahead.
Do you give your child an allowance? Would love to know what age and how much? Or if you are thinking about starting your child’s allowance soon.